dj_serene80 asked in PetsFish · 2 months ago

Why am I constantly having algae build up?

I have a 1.8-gallon tank with a betta and a (fairly large) mystery snail, as well as 3 plants and 2 moss balls. It has a 5-gallon filter and an LED light. I do a partial water change once a week.

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  • That is a really small tank. I have 4 tanks, all 10 gallons. 2 of them each have a single fantail goldfish. They get algae buildup if I don't change the tank every 7-10 days instead of doing just a partial water change. The other 2 tanks have a couple platy and a couple corydoras in them. They don't get the algae buildup because the corys are like suckerfish and clean the tank. I would advise leaving the snail in the little tank by itself. The snail could eat your fish if it gets too close. Put the beta in a 10 gallon tank and add 2 corydoras, and make sure it has plants in there because that keeps it cleaner. I had a beta in with corys before and they got along okay. The corys stay at the bottom more, and they didn't take crap from the beta. And the beta loved having more room to swim around. I don't know why they tell people it is okay to put betas in smaller containers just because they hang at the top, because my beta would swim all over in the tank and loved hiding in a barrel log at the bottom. I had two of the barrel logs because the corys liked it too. The corys are super cute and come in a lot of color varieties. You can find them at Petco.

  • 2 months ago

    What color, how close to outside light? Algae is a regular maintenance thing it goes with being an aquariust.

  • 2 months ago

    A tank that small gets dirty fast, and all that decaying food and poop that gets sucked into the filter is actually still in the tank.

    Is your tank staying cycled?  Test for ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate.  A cycled tank will have zero ammonia, zero nitrite, but nitrate will not be zero.  You need to be able to keep nitrate at or lower than 20-30 ppm.  Small tanks are very hard to keep stable.  I would Never use anything under five gallons. but even that is tricky to keep cycled.  in an uncycled tank you will have Ammonia and nitrite which are both toxic and both promote algeal blooms.  So find out if your tank is cycled.  and if the nitrates are under control and in the safe zone of 30 ppm or less but not zero. 

    If that is all in check then limit the lighting.  If that doesn't help, then check the sand for dead zones.  Still, have algae?  You should still have some algae it is an aquarium after all.   You could add live plants to use up some of the nutriants.  But to be honest, Upgrading to a 5 - 10-gallon aquarium is best for your fish. 

  • kswck2
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    Algae is usually caused by Light. How many hours per day are you leaving the light on? 

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  • 2 months ago

    How long are you leaving the light on? Keep it on too long and you get more algae. 

    You could add more plants. They eat up the nutrients algae needs. 

    You need to upgrade to a 5 gallon or larger. 1.8 gallons is too small for a betta. 

  • 2 months ago

    Algae is caused by phosphorus, from fish poop.  Clean out the fish poop.  It hides in the rocks at the bottom.  You can buy an aquarium siphon at pet stores.

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